To Molly With Love on National Survivors of Suicide Day

November 16th, 2010 · No Comments

National Suicide Survivors’ Day is for people who have lost loved ones to suicide. This year it is the Saturday before Thanksgiving, November 20. If you have struggled with this issue, you can find help at www.afsp.org.  The National Association for Suicide Prevention is sponsoring over 275 local conventions and events on Saturday to help people who have been through this terrible trauma.

To Molly, with love and remembrance

Saturday is a day of remembering things you don’t want to remember. A day of honoring someone you lost in a way you still can’t understand.  A day of recalling what you should have done differently.

My friend Molly was a knock-out gorgeous woman, but she thought she was fat and unattractive.   I used to try to talk her out of that crap — Do you know how many woman would trade places with you? How many would like to look like you? Huh?– But she never saw it. She never saw her own beauty.

Molly gave in little ways, like making sure you were included in a conversation, and in big ways, like putting the needs of her son before hers no matter what. But she never saw her generosity. She never gave herself credit for being wonderful.

Molly could be funny, and that made her a great friend.  After a few margaritas, she’d get earthy and talk dirty. Our book club wasn’t half as much fun when Molly wasn’t there. She read everything from the Enquirer to Dostoevsky, and her opinions of books were thoughtful and generous, but she thought she was dumb. –I had the baby so I didn’t get to college.  I wish I was smarter. I wish I had college –

When she was laid off from a job that she had held for almost 15 years, she never really recovered. The money pressures and the rejections that she took on job interviews and from men pushed her into some sad spiral I didn’t really understand. The last year of her life was one drama after another, and I got tired of high maintenance. Toward the end I didn’t always answer her phone calls, and that is something I will never forgive myself for.

Then there came that terrible day that her parents and her son found her. A beautiful vibrant 36-year-old woman had taken her own life, and that was impossible to understand.  She died alone, and that wasn’t right. Her funeral was the saddest one I ever attended.

After Molly died, I would drive by her house and cry, because I didn’t have my friend anymore and because I hated myself for getting tired and dropping out. Molly, I can’t forgive myself.  Molly, I’m so sorry.

It’s five years since then, and now when I go by her townhouse, I feel her in her best times.  I remember Molly all excited about some new man in her life. Molly at book club, bubbling over the latest Oprah.  Molly at soccer with her kid. Molly, smiling and laughing. Molly, I hardly knew you, you should have told me and not covered it up. Molly, I’m sorry.  Hey girlfriend, I miss you.

by Jane St. Clair

Author of Walk Me to Midnight

Tags: Against assisted suicide · Assisted suicide · Choices and Compassion · Compassion and Choices · Physician ASsisted Suicide · Suicide Prevention